Saturday, February 22, 2014

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic season 4 blog - Twilight Time

I wan to open this by saying, in regards to Amy Keating Rogers and last week's episode, I'm greatly troubled to see how people reacted in such an extreme way towards Ms. Rogers.  Regardless of how well she writes her episodes of the characters, she did not deserve the treatment she got, nor should anyone have to go through what she did.  Because of that, I'm finally going to get a Twitter account an apologize for the actions of my fellow Bronies and give her my condolences...


I will also make it clear that, despite the extreme reaction being uncalled for, she DID poorly write Pinkie Pie in such a way that created such a reaction.  I'm not saying she had it coming, not at all, I'm saying that there's a reason for everything, and I think it's clear that a lot of people, myself included, didn't like how Pinkie Pie acted in Filli Vanilli.  Speaking only for myself, I've never been a fan of Pinkie's innocent insensitivity, but the levels in which she went to in Filli Vanilli is easily the worst I've ever seen from Pinkie Pie, even worse then my previous most-hated Pinkie moment, that being when she stalked and pestered Cranky Doodle Donkey at the end of A Friend in Deed.  And I honestly don't care if people actually found Pinkie funny, or if they can somehow justify it, the fact of the matter is I don't want to see this happen again, and I want Amy Keating Rogers to realize this and not dismiss all the criticisms at the episode as blind hatred.  What I'm getting at is, I sympathize, even empathize with her a bit, but I also want her to grow into a better, more skilled writer in the process.

...And that nicely ties into this episode and Dave Polsky.  Dave Polsky recently stated on Twitter that he's trying his hardest to get rid of his status as the most controversial writer for the show.  And as much I don't care for him as a writer, I can't really blame him, because while I outright despise his first two episode, a lot of his more recent episodes seem to be trying to be good but still somehow manage to be controversial; Too Many Pinkie Pies had a questionable method of getting rid of all the Pinkie clones, Spike At Your Service had a cliched plot that came at the expect of Spike's character, Keep Calm and Flutter On...  oy vey...  Games Ponies Play had a plot that could easily be resolved in 5 seconds tops, and a resolution that made no sense, Daring Don't made a previously thought to be fictional character "real", and Rarity Takes Manehatten had ponies not acknowledge Twilight was a princess...  Ironic, since this episode seems to be all about Twilight's princesshood.

Let me get this right off the bat: no, I didn't like the episode.  Which is not to say that it's bad, I just really didn't care for it.  See, that's the thing about me, I try to acknowledge when something is good or bad, or just not for me personally.  I'm sure from a technical standpoint, it's decent, and I'm sure many people could get some enjoyment out of it...  I didn't.  I honestly don't want to argue about it, because lord knows I've argued too much lately.  In fact, what I said at the beginning is kind of why I won't be as in-depth this time around.  I doubt I would have liked it anyway, even if the whole AKR Pinkie fiasco didn't happen, but it certainly didn't help, either.  Anyway, let's get to this...

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Filli Vanilli: MLP Season 4 Being Too Gimmicky?

So I was in the middle of a discussion on a My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic forum I go to, when a thought occured to me...  According to Amy Keating Rogers on Twitter, this episode was originally going to be called "The Return of Flutterguy", before it was decided that that would be too spoilery...  That had me thinking...

This season seems to be all about gimmicks, as in each episode seems to be selling itself on a single gimmick, and the episode seems to be built around it as opposed to something that makes sense in the context of the series, thinking about how the characters would react in a certain situation, or anything like that.  Castle Mane-ia was a pretty flat "spooky" episode, Daring Don't's gimmick was Daring Do, a previously thought fictional character, being real, Power Ponies was a BLATANT comic book episode that felt completely interchangeable with any other TV series, Bats! felt like an excuse to turn Fluttershy into a bat, Three's a Crowd having Discord faking being sick just because, and now this, an episode that seems to want to bring back the Flutterguy voice.

I should note that that doesn't mean this season is all that bad, or only has gimmicky episodes.  Rarity Takes Manehatten, Pinkie Apple Pie, and Simple Ways feel like episodes right out of any previous season (though in the case of Rarity Takes Manehatten, that's kind of bad, given the whole "no one notices Twilight's a princess, but that's another discussion).  Hell, even episodes that DO have something of a gimmick, Flight to the Finish being both about Scootaloo's flight problems and tying into the Equestria Games subplot, Pinkie's Pride guest starring Weird Al Yankovic, and even this very episode, managed to make the episode more meaningful using that gimmick, as opposed to the other episodes, in which the gimmick drives the whole plot.

But here's the thing about this episode...  in retrospect, I feel like this episode's gimmick was thought up before the episode.  It feels like "hey, let's make an episode where the Flutterguy voice comes back, the fans really liked that!"  Part of me feels like this is kind of a bad way to go about this, since it opens up a lot of questions...  like how come Zecora has a potion that can instantly regrow chipped teeth yet her cure for a sore throat takes more then a day, why do the ponies refer to her manly voice as Flutterguy when it was originally used as teasing nickname from Spike, why did the ponies applaud a clearly female pony that has a really deep male voice instead of laughing, etc.  Like I said, the episode manages to address the idea of loving to perform but hating performing in front of an audience spectacularly well, but I feel like you could have done that WITHOUT the gimmick of the Flutterguy voice.

Eh, this was just a thought I had, and while I feel like this might be an issue with this episode (and season 4 as a whole) I don't think it's AS bad as Pinkie's characterization in this episode.  Like I said, the episode is done really well, despite the gimmick possibly holding it back.  Here's hoping the writers get more introspective with the series as opposed to just throwing ideas out there and fitting them into the plot later on.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic season 4 blogs - Filli Vanilli

Well, this was an interesting episode!  I started out thinking I'd hate this episode, but it turned out I loved it!  It might just be one of my new favorites, despite one major, consistent problem.  Still, I can't help but adore this episode, and I'll get to why...

First let my just say, HELLO AMY KEATING ROGERS, glad to see you're back again!  ...Sort of.  I have to admit, I was never all that fond of A.K.R. as a writer, specifically sense a lot of her episodes then to leave me...  very angry or annoyed.  But hey, she won back some good will with Pinkie's Pride, so maybe she'll do well here!  Hopefully...  With any luck.  Anyway, onto the actual episode.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Adventure Time blogs: Red Throne

Since I finally sat down an watched an Adventure Time episode when it aired, as opposed to binge-watching it along with several other episodes, I ended up having a lot to say about it.  As such, I figured I could give a blog post about it for anyone who's interested.

Before I talk about the episode, though, I want to mention that I saw this promo for this "Hall of Games" that'll be going on next week, and when I watched it, it felt like I was watching the intro to Cartoon Network Fridays, or Cartoon City; seeing all those CN characters interacting with each other, it was all great fun, and I wish that Cartoon Network did this more...  but then again, they don't have many cartoons to do this with.  That's a shame.

Anyway, Red Throne...  Um...  Well that was certainly interesting.  Like, the most interesting part of it was something I honestly wasn't expecting to be interesting.  Hell, it almost feels like a bait-and-switch...

Saturday, February 8, 2014

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic season 4 blog: Simple Ways

I should probably say right off the bat that I don't like love stories, not that there's anything wrong with them, they just don't interest me.  I should ALSO say I hate awkward moments, because they're hard to sit through.  This episode is FULL of that, plus other stuff I didn't like.  Which is not to say it's bad, in fact there's a lot of stuff I liked about it, I just doubt that I'll be re-watching it anytime soon...  Or maybe I will, just to try and catch anything going on in the background...  Anyway, see my thoughts after the break.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic Season 4 blog: Pinkie's Pride

And so we continue my journey into season 4 with Pinkie's Pride!

Well, um...  not sure what to say about this episode...  I mean, I have a lot to say, but it's hard to explain...  I mean, I'm going to explain myself, but so much happens, it's hard to even know where to start or what to talk about, like holy cow, so much happens...

So, here's the thing; when I heard "Weird Al" Yankovic was guest starring in this episode, I was hyped to living Hell, saying this will be the best season ever and this will be the best episode ever.  As the days got closer to the premiere, I started to calm down a bit, and I got worried.  For one thing, Amy Keating Rogers was not only writing the episode, but also the songs.  Amy Keating Rogers isn't the worst writer of the show, not by a long-shot, but last time she wrote a Pinkie Pie episode (A Friend in Deed), It made me really frustrated and REALLY angry...  like Dave Polsky's Feeling Pinkie Keen levels of anger.  And her other episodes that season, specifically The Last Roundup and MMMystery on the Friendship Express, I hated those episodes, too!  Which, again, doesn't mean I hate her as a writer, Hell I liked The Cutie Pox, as well as The Best Night Ever in season 1 (thought then again, her other episodes that season didn't do much for me, either), but it still made me nervous all the same.  And then there's the songs.  I only heard bits and pieces of them before I saw the episode, and while they were okay, I wasn't TOO impressed by them, nor was I all that impressed with A.K.R.'s original version of the Smile song.  This wouldn't have made me THAT nervous if Weird Al wasn't guest starring, and I felt it would be a travesty among travesties to have him guest star in an episode and NOT have him write at least one song!  Daniel Ingram's comments about working with him also made it sound like he mostly supervised and didn't actually write songs.  So again, I was worried this was going to backfire, but did it meet expectations?  Well, let's go through the episode from the start to finish, to show you my progression and my thoughts as it went.